TV “Tuesday”: A Song of Ice and Fire

tuesday tv meme

Well it’s not Tuesday for me anymore, but Tuesday somewhere, I guess… Either way, thanks to Codie’s awesome new meme, I have an excuse to talk about my all-time favourite shows Game of Thrones and do a roundup of what was a spectacular Season 6 (I’m biased).

Game of Thrones1

At this stage, Game of Thrones really needs no introduction- especially not from me. As you all know, I’m completely obsessed! (Obviously, since I couldn’t even go a week without talking about it- and let’s face it- I don’t know how I’m going to make it through the year without it- unless by some miracle Winds of Winter comes out). But just to give you some context, I watched Season 1 wayy back when it first came out and was so in love with it that in the summer I whizzed through all 5 books…. But when I finished A Dance with Dragons, I was dismayed to discover that  George R R Martin takes quite a while in between books :/ Like, a really, really long time (for anyone that doesn’t know). So I, like everyone else, waited with baited breath to see what would happen next, and this year, when the series finally overtook the book, fans of the show were rewarded with some spectacular reveals and some of the best scenes I’ve ever seen on TV!

For a more in depth look at each episode, feel free to check out my reviews for episode, feel free to check out my reviews by episode.

Game of Thrones Goes Off Book

Now That’s More Like It! Game of Thrones Comes Home

Game of Thrones is “Completely Effing Mad”

I Wish the Book of The Stranger Had Set Me On Fire

*OPEN SESAME* When One Door Closes…

Blood of My Blood Was A B+

*Episode 7 or Man Chops Wood was too dull to review*

No One Wins in Game of Thrones

Battle of the Bastards Fought off All My Doubts for this Season

The Winds of Winter Have Arrived

And that’s all for now! (Sadly!) If you enjoyed this meme check out Codie @ReadersAnonymous– its awesome creator!

Are you a Game of Thrones fanatic? What coping mechanisms are using in the long wait for the next series? Let me know in the comments!

The Winds of Winter Have Arrived…

got 6-10

And they brought a storm with them. I swear, this episode will blow your socks off- in some instances quite literally.

Lots and lots and lots happened- I hardly know where to begin! In true Game of Thrones fashion, there was plenty of action, big reveals galore and some huge shocks! So if you want to shy away from those facts *now’s the time to stop reading* *Seriously, stop reading now!*

Crowning Glory

Because finally it has been proved that R + L =J!!! Who saw that coming? Okay everyone- but it was still spectacular to see years and years of speculation finally be confirmed. Jon is not just “a motherless bastard from the south”, as Littlefinger called him. In fact, if Lyanna married Rhaegar as many fans suspect, he’s not a bastard at all- but the true heir to the Iron Throne. In fact, he could very well be more important than that. Because now that this fan theory has been proved, the rest could follow like dominoes. As the literal embodiment of Ice and Fire, there is no doubt in my mind now that he is Azor Ahai and he weilds the power to defeat the Night’s King.

winter is here well father always promised



And while our attention is still on the North, one of my favourite scenes was the exchange between Jon and Sansa. Now while I loved their unity here, knowing Game of Thrones as I do, I have my fears that Jon saying that they need to trust each other is a signal that distrust lurks on the horizon. Considering how much Sansa has changed, I don’t doubt that she is capable of great and terrible things- I only hope Jon doesn’t get caught in the middle of whatever is going on between her and Littlefinger! I can only take heart at her saying “Only a fool trusts Littlefinger”. But let’s not forget…

night king

The North certainly remembers- in fact this scene was so incredibly reminiscent of when the North declared its allegiance to Rob that I found myself tearing up. It was all incredibly moving and the Northerners showed their true calibre- especially the young bear (aka Miss Mormont- gosh I love that child!) Really though we know that Jon Snow is more than just THE KING IN THE NORTH. And speaking of new monarchs…

Lioness Rampant

Okay- it seems a bit harsh to make a reference to Alanna from Tamora Pierce’s Song of the Lioness Quartet and Cersei Lannister in the same breath- but I hardly know how else to describe it. Cersei delivered a sublime bit of political manoeuvring.  In an unbelievable stroke of brilliance, she cut down the roses and used her little birds to kill the Sparrow. Marjery did show a certain amount of savviness in her last moments- but those were her last moments nonetheless- she was never a match for Cersei after all. Finally we saw that the lion still has claws. “A Lannister always pays his debts”- and goodness didn’t we get to see that was true in her scene with the Septa.

cersei confess

But in getting her vengeance, she lost the one thing left she truly cared about. Tommen had a bit of a fall from grace- yes I can joke about it; he’s been a bit of a crap character. Still, she’s got what she’s always wanted- she’s queen at last. In her own right.

I’m actually relieved for next season. Finally I feel like that we now have a good opponent for Dany to deal with. I worried that after half the kings and queens of Westeros were wiped out, the path to the Iron Throne would be clear. But looking at the creepy cult Cersei has built around her, I have no such fears. If anything I’m more afraid of the new Grand Maester (Just look at what he did to the old one!) And, just in case we don’t think there is enough to get on with next season, the brief interlude in Dorne set up all the big players looking forward to taking the lions down! Not least of all, Varys playing his hand and promising “fire and blood”. Make it rain Dany! Now that she has finally set sail, it’s as Tyrion says…

great game

And while we’re making predictions about next season- since a male relative is destined to kill Cersei according to the prophecies in the books, I now believe that to be Jaime. Because that look in his eyes as she ascended the throne was not one of love. If/when she becomes a true tyrant, I have no doubt that he will be the one forced to take her down. Because he’s the kingkiller after all- he does what is necessary.

Just Desserts

freys and lannisters.png

Speaking of Jaime- he made a very brief appearance in the episode. But when he did he proved again that he is a more noble man than most in an absolutely brilliant confrontation with Walder Fray. One of my absolutely favourite lines in that scene was when Walder said he wouldn’t kill the child because it would “give the family a bad name”- which I thought was hilarious, all things considered.

But of course that wasn’t the most significant scene involving Walder Fray. Because in a totally Tantalus move (yes, the Classics dork in me is making an appearance) Arya Stark literally fed him his own sons! It’s very poetic way to kill someone that broke the guest rights. It is the best way to punish him for killing his dinner guests. Frankly, if anyone had it coming, it was that slimeball Walder Fray.

And Lastly…

In a scene to delight book lovers everywhere, Samwell Tarley had his Beauty and the Beast moment- and by that I mean he discovered the most incredible library in the world…


And that’s it- the end of another season. Time to get the violins out… And speaking of which, I have to say the thing I noticed most about last episode was the cinematography and in this episode it was how incredibly poignant the soundtrack was. It created the most incredible atmosphere and the perfect note to end the season. I adored it!

What did you think of all the incredible revelations and action this episode? Are you as distraught as I am about the series being over? How are you gonna survive until next season- I need tips!


No One Wins in Game of Thrones

got 6-8

So last week I totally failed to put out my Game of Thrones review- in fairness I was pretty shattered when I finally watched it and this was the extent of my notes:

what is this episode

Honestly, I can’t see the point of watching the Hound chop wood for half an hour and didn’t have much else to say about it cos nothing was new in it. But normal service was resumed this week- so I’m back!

*Spoilers galore*

Okay, so as I said in my title, no one wins in Game of Thrones- and that nobody is Arya Stark. Because this week Jaqen H’ghar finally gave her the title of “no one”. And even while she claimed to still be someone, it’s clear she’s taken something away from her time with the Faceless Men.

Being someone and having family ties is very costly in the world of Game of Thrones. Like in the case of Edmure Tully and the Blackfish. Both have lost- but not simply because of their weakness (in Edmure Tully’s case) or because of their stubbornness (as with the Blackfish), but because they held onto who they were. The same could be true for those in the Capital- it is by holding onto who they are and the power that they believe their identity affords them that is costing them so much now.

Being a nobody, however, pays dividends. Tyrion’s success is in being a no one- no one ever expects anything from him and yet in spite of that he succeeds against all odds. (Granted this episode he was having an off day- but still). Likewise, the Hound is a second son and at his lowest point- now that he has reached rock bottom he can actually come back and be someone. This season is all about rebirth- none more so for Dany- who’s brief appearance reminded us that she has gone back to being nothing so that she can be something more again. And then there is Arya Stark- who spent the last season learning to be no one, discarding her identity so that she can be someone.

All the best characters have lost their way- but it is by losing themselves that they are able to find a way back. Just as I suspect the biggest nobody of them all, Jon Snow, will inevitably come back next episode and win in the Battle of the Bastards- boy am I excited for that!

Until then, here were some other notable points from this episode:

  • Vary’s has gone off on a secret mission- probably to pave the way for Dany back in Westeros- but I don’t really know. Anyone have any other ideas?
  • Jaime and Brienne had their reunion and it was as emotional as you would expect.
  • Speaking of Jaime- there was a great discussion on Verge about how he is whoever you believe him to be- which I’m inclined to agree with
  • And- in true Game of Thrones fashion- there were some fantastic one liners- like “You’re shit at dying” (the Hound) and this one from Cersei:

i choose violence

So do you agree with my prediction that all the nobodies will win Game of Thrones? What did you think of this episode? Let me know in the comments!

Blood of my Blood was a B+

got 6-6

O-kay, so some of this episode was in the right vein. And some of it was not. Let’s get to it- and as always I’m gonna get spoilery.

The opening scene picked up where the last episode left off and definitely had my heart racing. Switching between Meera running and Bran’s visions was a very exciting way to start. And what’s more WE ACTUALLY GOT TO SEE THE MAD KING! And that was- oddly enough- an absolute delight.

The Starks seem to be making a *tiny* bit of a comeback as well- what with Benjen Stark turning up. And the Arya scene later in the episode finally gave us an indication that she was leaving the faceless men and that underneath it all she is still a Stark (thank goodness!) But unfortunately that was where the Stark fun ended- because there was sadly no Jon or Sansa or even Rickon in this episode.

Instead we got a little insight into Sam’s life- which was good in a way. I did enjoy his perfectly ghastly father and his blossoming relationship with Gilly. I also liked the fact that Sam rather conveniently got hold of a Valyrian steel sword (whether he’ll make it out of their easily with it is another matter). Either way, it definitely segued nicely into the theme of family.

Which brings me onto the business of a couple of messed up families that had quite a lot of attention in this episode: the Tyrells and the Lannisters. Honestly, I’m not wholly invested in the outcome of what happens in King’s Landing right now, because half the time I’m watching it I keep thinking “someone kill that stupid sparrow and that idiot king” (*hint, hint* Arya– come back and murder them all please).

And speaking of blood thirsty murderers- am I the only one that feels like Dany coming over to Westeros with her Dothraki hoards and murdering a bunch of people won’t be such a good thing at this stage? I mean, there was a time when I wanted her to come in and conquer everyone that deserved it- but at this stage I just feel like Westeros has bled enough. And- dare I say it- I’m past the whole here’s-a-dragon-be-excited phase. Don’t get me wrong- I’ll always love dragons more than anything, but enough with the recycled material already!

To be honest, my main feelings about this episode are that we are now over halfway into the series and all that’s happened so far has felt like build up. Which is good in a way- I do like good build up and I do enjoy good character development. BUT I do want to see things mixed up a bit and some action really wouldn’t go amiss at this stage! I do think this series still has the potential to be a good one and I certainly prefer a lot of the individual episodes to last year, I’m just hoping that all this slow-burning build up is going somewhere. Otherwise I will be far from sanguine.

What did you think of this episode? Now that we’re over halfway, how do you feel about season 6 so far? And do you think I overdid it with the puns? 😉 Let me know!  

*OPEN SESAME* When One Door Closes…

got 6-5.png

Game of Thrones smacks you in the face with this! What a riot this episode was. I felt unhinged when I first watched it, I think I’ve got a handle on it. Sort of. Mostly.

Gosh- where do I even start with this one? There were so many awesome elements to this episode. This turned out to be an episode of major reveals and fantastic drama. Hold tight, cos this is about to get *spoilery*

All the Starks are in fine fighting form. Sansa shows her teeth and goes for Littlefinger at last- something I’ve been waiting for with baited breath since the season began. Arya’s training picks up pace. And (the honorary ex-Stark) Theon allies with his sister- against the fairly psychotic Euron (seriously- what kind of nutcase admits to killing his brother? And what kind of nutcases then elects said-nutcase as king?? Gah- the Iron Islanders are bonkers!)

And what of the actual door in question? Well aside from tepid metaphors I could make about doors equalling new opportunities, there was only one real mention of a door. But what a massive deal that door turned out to be. Because we finally got to see what caused Hold-the-door to be Hodor- which I *never* would’ve seen coming in a million years! I mean, Bran freakin’ broke Hodor’s mind with his power!

Time becomes very Doctor-Who-esque here as Hodor’s beginning and end become one and the same moment.

doctor who timey wimey.gif

Bran witnesses the horror of his own actions, seeing his ability to Warg going terribly wrong. Everything slots into place and we finally understand why Hodor took it so badly when Bran took him over before- it was foreshadowing this tragic end- and it is likely that a part of Hodor’s brain knew what it foretold. He always knew what Bran’s journey would mean for him- but he couldn’t stop it because it was inevitable.

So another powerful episode from Game of Thrones! What did you think of it? Let me know!

(And I apologise profusely for the terrible puns)

I wish the Book of the Stranger had set me on fire….

got 6-4.png

But Episode 4 didn’t quite ignite the usual spark. Don’t get me wrong- there were still moments of TV gold- still the majority of the episode felt very repetitive. And I’m more annoyed about that than anything else- because I’ve said that in one of my reviews before and now I’m being repetitive.

Don’t get me wrong, I still enjoyed this episode- I just had quite a few niggling problems with it that when I came to write down my thoughts, it comes across as mostly negative (which I’m actually sorry about for a change)

*Spoilers abound*

The ending with Dany was entertaining enough- but in all honesty *we’ve been here before*. And I know that’s the point of her story arc this season “to go back to the beginning” (which is what it says in the book), yet it doesn’t make it any bit more interesting. Honestly, when she said she had a plan, I was hoping she’d come up with something a bit more spectacular. Which I recognise is a ridiculous thing to say, given that she just set herself on fire, however given that she’s done that before *with dragons*, you’ll have to forgive me for being unimpressed. It just failed to stir the same emotions in me this time as it has in the past. In all honesty, I would’ve preferred Dany finding a way out using subtler and more political tactics.

Now that I’ve got that bit out the way- what more can I say about this episode? Sadly the answer is: not much. Littlefinger was back, Tyrion’s still doing politics, and the Lannisters are plotting with the Tyrells, Reek made it home and Jorah still has dragonscale (in case we needed another reminder where he looks dramatically at his arm)- it all felt like this episode was setting the scene- much like the first one in the series. And while I had patience back then, I’m going to lose it quickly if it keeps on this way.

The one glimmer of absolute joy in this episode was the exquisite scene where Jon and Sansa were reunited. Tell me I’m not the only one who squealed with delight over that? Because that was glorious. After so many seasons of watching the Starks lose everything, it was pure magic to see at least some of them having a moment of happiness. It made me want to cry! (in a good way). That, added together with Ramsay’s sinister note and the murder of Osha, provided for some truly entertaining moments that saved this episode for me.

Overall (no spoilers), this episode would have been fine if I didn’t hold Game of Thrones to such a high standard. The fangirl in me wants to blot out my own criticism by jamming my fingers in my ears and shouting “I’m not listening, I’m not listening”

gollum not listening.png

But sadly I’m not Gollum and I have to listen to my own thoughts :p

So what did you think of this episode? Love it or hate it? Don’t keep me in suspense!

Game of Thrones is “Completely Effing Mad”

got 6-3.png

Yes, I know I’ve censored Davos’ amazing line- normally I wouldn’t- but just this once I thought I’d give people a massive warning to *look away now* if they haven’t seen this week’s episode/don’t know what happened last week/just find swearing offensive in general. Because Game of Thrones just got fucking crazy.

*So spoiler warning if you didn’t get that loud and clear- cos I’m about to dive right in*

I’m gonna start with talking about how much I loved Davos in this episode. I have to say the straight-talking knight was always too much of a Stannis loyalist for me to be overly fond of him, but last year and this year, I’ve warmed to him considerably. And the opening to this episode really reminded me why I’ve come to love him so much. He is the voice of reason and normalcy in a completely insane world- and I just adored how he grounded the plot of this episode in reality with his no nonsense approach. Once again, the writers proved how Game of Thrones can have a dose of realism in high fantasy.

What I also loved about this episode was how we got to see *some* of the Tower of Joy scenes. Let’s be honest though, when Ned Stark said “and now it ends” I had hoped all our speculation about Jon’s parentage would finally come to an end there and then- but that was obviously not to be- so it was a little less joyous then I hoped. We will have to wait (probably not too long, I’m sure) to see if R + J = L is true.

Here we actually saw something I did not expect- which was Ned actually getting his hands dirty and not being the man of honour we all thought him to be. This was an interesting character development, because it actually shows how his path to his noble nature was not actually as straightforward as we had always assumed it to be.

Dishonour was clearly a theme in the episode- particularly as we saw some of *the most* dishonourable c-words (hey- I’m just quoting the show!) in Ramsay and Umber. Oh my goodness, this scene could not have gutted me more- because when they dumped that direwolf’s head out, I was devastated. Seriously- CAN’T THE STARKS EVER CATCH A BREAK?!?! GAH!!! Seriously- stop playing with my emotions Game of Thrones!

But the really solidifying moment of the episode was seeing the Oathbreakers get their just deserts at the wall- including Olly. I know we were supposed to sympathise with him at the end of the episode, but I couldn’t bring myself to care- especially after seeing what he has done to my poor Jon Snow. Because Jon’s story has just become tragic. It literally broke my heart when he said “and now my watch has ended”. And while I expected Jon to change and there to be scars, I hadn’t expected it to take such a psychological turn. Now it feels like his story is taking a real existential turn- and I think it’s a bold move and reminds me why I got hooked on this show in the first place. Ending the episode with the mournful notes of Rains of Castamere really drilled home that message of Jon’s loss. The people may think he is a god, but he is less than a man.

Overall, this episode really pulled its punches. There were of course some forgettable bits- such as Dany’s plot and King’s Landing (I don’t know how many weeks I can go on saying “nothing new happened”, “kill the Sparrow” or “Tommen’s useless”) And there were moments where characters and plots were reintroduced- I hadn’t actually expected to “sea” Samwell Tarly- but I would have hoped the scene could have been a bit less sickly. But there were also bits that solidified my entertainment- like the Arya scenes, Tyrion’s wit and even watching Varys show off his skills for once. I for one, am loving this new season.

Well- what did you think of this episode? Enjoy it? Do you like the route the show’s taking? Are you, like me, excited for more? Let me know in the comments!

Now that’s more like it! Game of Thrones comes home

got 6-2.png

Well, once again, Game of Thrones proves it can be messy, intense and poetic. I made no secret that the first episode of this season felt like a bit like a recap. But this episode was more like the old school Game of Thrones I know and love.

For those of you that haven’t watched it yet, I will say that this had *everything* I complained was missing from the first episode. The narrative was cohesive and so many times there were references to “Home”, so that everything tied in perfectly. It also had a much more intense tempo and there were only a couple of scenes when I felt like it slowed down- which was a vast improvement. Add to that some very quotable witticisms from Tyrion and some poetic lines from the mouths of the villains, and you’ve got one happy orangutan.

Now let’s get into it properly… (SPOILERS ABOUND)

I was so excited by Bran’s visions. I’d seen the hints of flashbacks of Arthur Dane and Ned Stark in the trailers for the season (and in all the leaked spoilers) but I was delighted to see how that would be shown through Bran’s training. I also loved that this set the tone for the episode, by having Bran have the chance to go home, if only through his visions.

Since we’re talking about the theme of Home, I loved the connection between Theon’s longing for home and the intrigue going on in the Iron Islanders. I can see already some really awesome stories being set up there. I cannot wait to see what the mad Greyjoys do next!

And speaking of mad characters- the Boltons never fail to give us those insane moments Game of Thrones is famous for. Somehow, in spite of his psycho tendencies, I didn’t see Ramsay killing his father (in fact, when they went in for the hug, I thought his father was the one that was going to do the stabbing). I did suspect (ok more than suspect) that Ramsay would murder his new brother- so that was no surprise. Either way it was great drama and a nice poetic death for the backstabbing Bolton.

Of course when I heard Ramsay saying he wanted to take the fight upto Jon Snow, I thought “come on then- even dead he could take you!” (Yes my inner football fan came out) And I thankfully I wouldn’t have to wait long! Because- shockingly- Jon Snow came back from the dead! (okay, okay, that’s not a shock at all- we all saw that coming- but I had expected it to happen later in the season) I won’t say we didn’t have to wait long, because I’ve had to wait FIVE YEARS for this cliffhanger to be resolved! Finally my suspicions have been proved correct and Melisandra has brought Jon back- *thank all the unholy gods of Westeros*!

I could easily spend the rest of this post just talking about that, but I have to give credit where credits due, because that wasn’t the only fantastic thing about this episode. As usual, Tyrion practically stole the show with his witticisms and had me laughing out loud more than once

Please don't eat the help.png

That dragon scene could easily have been the highlight of the episode for me (if Jon hadn’t inadvertently stolen the show later on). I love how we’re getting to see his passion for dragons, because that’s a really big thing in the book. Plus it is my not-so-secret theory that he is secretly a Targaryen. I’d love it if that were true!

My only low point of the episode was king’s landing, because there’s no one I really care about there and nothing new ever seems to happen lately. It just seems to endlessly be the Lannisters promising to punish people- which of course never happens cos they can’t even manage to stop that bloody sparrow already! I swear, every time it goes there now I spend half the time hoping the sparrow dies and the other time hoping someone does away with poor useless Tommen. (Is it bad to feel that way? Ah well, it’s Game of Thrones– I’m bound to have some subversive thoughts about it)

But really ridiculously nitpicky of me and I’m just going to end on how excited I am to see where this goes now!

Game of Thrones Goes Off Book

got 6-1

*No spoilers this time!*

Well, Game of Thrones is back in style- sort of. There were some heart in the mouth moments, some seriously-did-they-just-kill-another-good-guy moments (hey- that’s not spoilery- it’s Game of Thrones) and some parts where people repeated sentiments they had 4 seasons ago and I just wanted to nudge the plot along.

Just to whiz through some of my favourite bits, the opening and ending scenes in Castle Black were dark and gritty and quite excellent. Davos reminded me why I love him; Melisandra reminded me why she freaks me out. I swear if the whole episode had just stayed in the north (including the brief but epic Sansa scenes- *squeals all round for that bit*) then I’d have been a very happy bunny. But immediately after Sansa had done her bit, it hopped down south for what felt like a bit of a recap and some predictable back-stabbing.

Which was fine- the problem wasn’t really the physical direction of the story, but how disconnected all the scenes felt from each other. In the past, Game of Thrones was able to beautifully balance one story or theme across all the different board games. Here that just didn’t happen. I suppose that’s in part due to how big the story has become. It just doesn’t have the cohesiveness it used to and I wonder how long it will take before it starts to feel like one story again.

But that’s being super nit-picky because it’s still Game of Thrones and it’s still awesome. I think it’s fair that they used the first episode to set the scene, pick up all the threads of the old stories and set the tempo for the rest of the series. I’m just not sure if it’s going to be the calibre of seasons 1-4, or a bit lacklustre like last season. At the moment there are parts that feel a bit repetitive and are bordering on boring (I seriously don’t know whether I’m ever gonna care about the Sand Snakes- I should– but I don’t). We shall have to wait and see how this continues…

I hope you enjoyed that- I’m planning to do reviews of all the upcoming episodes of Game of Thrones (just cos!)- which may in the future get quite spoilery, fairly fangirly and very excitable!